Just as with sharpening a serrated knife, sharpening your bread knife needs a unique technique. It is nothing like working on a straight edge knife. Grinding each of the serrations needs to be done manually.
However, doing this job does not need to be time-consuming. While it may be challenging for first-timers, as you get used to it, it gets more comfortable, and you will complete the job much faster.
The good news is that most modern electric sharpeners are built so that they can also accommodate serrated knives. If you choose to go for manual sharpening techniques, there are also some reliable methods that can be used.
There is also a method that is neither fully automatic nor is it fully manual. It is the most preferred method by homeowners who need to use their bread knives effectively. So if you are wondering whether bread knives can be sharpened, the answer is yes, and this article lists three effective methods.
Use the Sharpening Rod
Choosing a sharpening rod is not easy. You do not just get any rod for your serrated knives. Remember that the serrations on each knife vary in size and design. You, therefore, need to choose a rod that is almost the same size in diameter as the serrations to avoid expanding them and damaging your beloved kitchen sword.
Ceramic rods are most preferred for this type of job. The design of this is specifically designed to get into these serrations regardless of how small they might be. It ensures that you can sharpen the knife tooth by tooth.
For all serrated knives, the beveled edge is on one side of the knife. Your main job is to find this edge so you can sharpen it comfortably. The bevel-edged face is slightly on the inside of each serration. You should only apply the beveled edge of serrated knives.
You must make sure that you place the sharpening rod into these serrated gullets.
Ensure that the rods are kept very shallow in the beveled edges. When using a tapered rod, you need to make sure that you align it in the position where it can fill these gullets completely. To sharpen, move the rod up and down these gullets until you feel the burr at the back of the knife. These burrs are metal shavings from the sharpening process that tell you that you are doing a great job.
Always make sure that you are using short and smooth strokes to enter through each of the grooves. Stroke away from the groove to ensure that you do not harm yourself in the process. Each groove will only need you to pass through it a few times.
Remove the metal shavings with a fine-grit sandpaper. If the serrations vary in length, make sure that you vary the diameter of the rod as you go.
Use a Spyderco Sharpmaker
This tool uses an assisted manual approach to sharpen knives. It is easy for you to get the razor finish with this tool. The best part is that this is a tool that can be used for both straight and serrated knives.
Its technology uses ceramic rods that are placed in V angles of about 40 degrees. Your work here is only to make sure that the knife stays straight as it moves up and down through the rods. This is a huge issue that may determine whether the knife is adequately sharpened or not.
With serrated knives, you have to keep them more slanted than the average chef’s knives. You can do this 5 times. Pay close attention to the angle as each bread knife has its own unique angle. You also have to use fine-grit sandpaper to remove the serrations.
Using the Electric Knife Sharpener
Electric sharpeners are great because they keep the knife adequately sharpened. It is much like getting it sharpened by a professional. It is both convenient and time-saving.
If possible, invest in a good electric sharpener that will make your work in the mornings more relaxed and better. All you need to do is understand the number of sharpening stages that the knife requires.
However, before you buy this tool, it is critical to making sure that you find out whether it can handle serrated knives. Today, most companies are including this feature in the newer sharpeners they are producing.
However, it is a feature that was not available in the past. If the sharpener does not allow this, it will be nearly impossible for you to use it with serrated knives. If it can, the work will be convenient and easy for you.
All you need to do is pass it through the appropriate stage in the machine. It will do all the work for you including the job of removing the metal shavings.
The answer to the question, “Can you sharpen a bread knife?” is yes. It is not easy but it can still be done. With an electric sharpener, it is easy to complete this job in less than 5 minutes.
If you are using the manual methods, always make sure that you get the angle right. Otherwise, you risk causing irreparable damage to the knife. However, with the methods explains above, you can quickly get your blade sharpened without damaging it.
Here, I have described the processes in detail so that you do not damage your precious knives. It is also so that you can keep your knife in optimum condition for years.
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